Sunday, November 02, 2008

Another great weekend

Things just never seem to stop for me. It's been another full and busy weekend. And ya know what? I'm still enjoying every minute of it.
As you're all well aware, from reading my previous post, I did the whole Harvest Party thing at my church on Friday night. It turned out really good. Which is not always something that we say about the Harvest Party. Being that our church is located in a somewhat transitional/economically depressed area means that we have a lot of people who just show up because what we're doing is free. And that includes food, as well as candy, gifts and prizes for the games and activities. Typically, the people who just show up for the free stuff have much less respect for the church and those who volunteer to make the event happen. In the past, without getting into too much detail, there have been a lot of problems caused by people who care nothing for the fact that our church doesn't have to do this every year, they still feel as if they're owed something just for showing up. Well, allow me to say nothing of the sort took place this year. There were no trouble-making kids or parents to deal with. And everyone who volunteered to help out actuall had a lot of fun - especially me!
So this is what it looked like shortly after things got started. More kids and parents started showing up as the evening progressed and we hada pretty full house by the end of the evening.



These are some of the kids I got to play with. We were all having a blast.



These were great kids. And they all really enjoyed watching me make my thing...



It matches my "costume", doesn't it? Everybody else thought so, too.
And it took me a long time to get this done. In fact, it took me until everything was done and clean-up was mostly finished. But all of the kids were so geeked about it that they were helping to pick out the black and white beads for me to use. Otherwise, I might still be there trying to finish it.
So, after the Harvest Party, I headed home and relaxed. Ate some candy. Hung out with Bob and one of his friends. They had gone to Monroeville Mall to do some Trick-or-Treating, and to just hang out in general, but came back to the house afterwards.

Saturday started with laundry. No big deal. But I had a Compassion event in the afternoon to do downtown, at the Convention Center.
I have to admit, it was kinda boring. When I arrived, there was nobody at the table - which is really odd. The table location was kinda out-of-the-way, in the lobby near the Info Booth. And everything had just ended for lunch. So there were a few people wandering about, here-and-there, but that's abot it. But I do have to say, I had a great view from where the table was.



You can see the bike trail running along the river. We rode it once last year. As I recall, that ride had some great pics. You can see them here, here, here, here, here, and here.






Evetually, John came out to the table. He didn't even know I was supposed to be there. So he was pretty surprised to see me. That's when he told me about the main table. The main table was in the actual auditorium, and it was such a cool set-up too. And, since there was nothing going on at the time, he told me to go on in and check things out.
Compassion set up a home-shack for this event. It's a representation of what the majority of the families, in many of the places where Compassion has programs operating, call their home. This is it.









You can see how the bedroom is seperated from the living room by a simple bedsheet.



As many as eight people may sleep in that single bed. Can you imagine that? I can't.
It's kinda eye-opening, to see how some people have to live. It puts things into perspective for me. I worry so much about my house, the things I need to do but can't afford, while millions of people all around the world are happy just to have a roof over their head. It's unsettling, actually, to think about how much I do have and to worry about what I don't have while there are so many struggling just to live. Still, I have to say it makes me that much more satisfied to be a part of Compassion's ministry. In my very small way, I'm helping out. Maybe not as much as I'd like, but I'm doing what I can - and trying to get others involved, too.

Since there was nothing else going on at the other table, I wandered around the auditorium to check out the various ministries that were there. Got a lot of "free stuff" from them. A frisbee, some tabasco sauce (Yeah, I have no idea why), a cowbell ("I got a fever, and the only cure is more cowbell."), a CD and lots of info cards. And, yes, I struggled with the fact that I was carrying around a bunch of "free stuff" after seeing the home-shack. And, in a sense, I wanted to just yell, at the top of my lungs "Couldn't we be putting these resources to better use?" But I know that Compassion uses less than 10% of their funding for "promotions", so I have to hope the same holds true for these other minsitries. If that's the case, I can live with what's happening because the rest of the resources are being used for better results.
Wrapped it up at the Convention Center and headed home. Aliesha and her boyfriend, Craig, wanted to take me out for dinner - a belated birthday dinner (see, Faith, you're not the only late one). So Bob and I got ready to go. We went to the Moon Buffet - the one with the mongolian BBQ. It was good, and Craig brought his kids along. All in all an enjoyable evening, and a great ending to a good day.
Now, today, I'm skipping church, because I haven't had a Sunday off in a long time. And I want to spend some time with Bob before I take him back to his mother's this afternoon. We'll also be having dinner at Mom's - as we do every Sunday. Then I'll come home and recover from the busyness of the weekend before I have my next Compassion event on Wednesday night. P.Dave is tagging along for this one. It probably won't be as hilariously funny - or twisted and demented - as the last event was with JT. But I'm sure it will be good.
OK, that's about it for now. Have a good one.

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3 Comments:

Blogger 陳順銓Chen,Shun-Chuan said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

9:29 AM  
Blogger One Wink at a Time said...

My goodness you're a busy boy. By the time I got to the end of the post I couldn't remember what I'd planned to say about something at the beginning!
Let me see... the birthday dinner sounded great. The Compassion display was disturbing but made me think. You got some good pictures and the Harvest Party is such a nice idea and the kids looked like they enjoyed themselves.
Sorry, I didn't recognize "The Punisher" but PD clued me in.

8:48 PM  
Blogger M+ said...

Wink,
Yes, I am!
Unfortunately I can't read your mind, let alone lost memories of humorous remarks, so we'll just have to hope something else jogs your memory.
Dinner was great! Much yummy food.
Glad the Compassion display made you think. That's why they have it. And that's why I shared it. I think you know how much my heart is into this ministry. So I do whatever I can to keep it in the foreground of what I'm doing in my faith. I will say that I would love it if I could convince everyone who visits my blog to become a sponsor - it has truly changed my life - but I know that not everybody is called to do that. And that's OK, especially since I know you're doing what you can in other ways to help the impoverished of the world.
The Harvest Party is a great thing. It's one of our biggest outreach efforts into the community each year. And it pays-off slowly, over many years, in trickles. P.Dave tells many stories of people who've approached him to tell him how the church, just being a safe place to go to, impacted them when they were little. It's a great testimony.
I was hoping someone could clue you in to The Punisher thing. I'm liking PD more and more. He doesn't by chance speak Klingon?

7:44 PM  

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